Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Monday, January 6

 I cannot believe i've blogged almost all of our SE Asia trip! 
This will be my last post in Cambodia, and then I have a few posts for Vietnam {which I cannot WAIT for you to see!} 

Phnom Penh truly surprised me. 
As the capital of Cambodia, with a violent history, I suppose I was expecting something a bit more undeveloped like Kathmandu (where we had been living). But instead, we found a bubbling, vibrant city, friendly city with wide boulevards and regal monuments (a product of being a French colony). The town center was built upon the Mekong river, and it has a really fun river walk,
with the gorgeous colorful palace dotting its shores. 

We arrived in Phnom Pehn one afternoon, and checked into our hotel. We stayed at the White Linen Botique Hotel, which we chose very carefully and consciously. Because Cambodia has a huge problem with sex-trafficking, especially among little girls, we chose the White Linen because it supports an organization called The Daughters of Cambodia. The DOC works with women who have been trafficked, helping them heal from their trauma as well as teaching them job skills. Therefore, the workers of our hotel were young rescued women training for a future in hospitality. This hotel was incredibly gorgeous, and I'd totally recommend staying there! 

We spent a day touring the city, and immersing ourselves into the history. Cambodia was colonized by the French, and when given independence in the mid 20th century, fell into the hands of a cruel dictator named Pol Pot. In a few year span, Pol Pot had exterminated 1/3 of his population (2 million people!). We visited the prison where they tortured prisoners (innocent people), and then the notorious Killing Fields, where the Khmer Rouge killed thousands of people. The day was a sober reality to the evil in the world, and Kevin and I spent the afternoon processing and resting. 
While it was absolutely worth seeing, it was hard, and my heart hurt for this beautiful country. 

Despite the horrendous evil inflicted upon the county, I found the people incredible kind and generous. 
They were warm and smiled constantly, and oh, so kind. (did I already mention that? haha). 

One of the best parts of the trip was meeting up with a good friend of mine from College named Isaac. Issac works for an INCREDIBLE organization called Agape International Missions (AIM). AIM works in an area right outside of Phnom Penh that has historically been a huge area for foreign men "buying" young girls. AIM started a youth center there a few years ago, and now has a church, 2 youth centers, a gym, and a garment and bracelet business employing girls and giving them an opportunity out of prostitution. I literally had chills the ENTIRE time Isaac shared about the ministry, 
as God is rescuing, redeeming and giving these girls a future!! 

Phnom Penh was an experience we won't forget. 
Enjoy the pictures…sorry there are so many, haha! 

Happy Monday friend,
Love Katie 
 {as usual in Cambodia, the markets were chock full of exotic foods! 
Kev and I got a little adventurous!} 
 {bugs, anyone?} 
 {I only put a few pictures of the prison and fields below, but do not want this to minimize the awful tragedy. To learn more about the Cambodian genocide, see here
 {the S-21 prison below} 
 {the killing fields} 

{I was AMAZED at how many items they packed onto their scooter!}
 {I LOVED the lotus flowers!} 
 {the traditional tuk tuk below…how we got around!} 
 {meeting up with my awesome friend Isaac! he took us on a Mekong river cruise} 
 {monks just eating ice cream along the river, hehe!} 
 {visiting the village where Isaac works} 
 {seeing the girls in action!} 
 {to buy one of these beautiful bracelets, click here
 {Below is the White Linen Botique Hotel. What an amazing organization!!} 
 {amazing breakfast on their patio!} 

As you can see, our time in Phnom Penh was FULL but rich. I hope one day you'll get the chance to explore Cambodia, a most amazing country! 

love Katie 


  1. So beautiful Katie!!!! I had never heard of the White Linen before but the place looks gorgeous and I obviously just love the idea behind it! I'll add Cambodia on my list of places to visit . . .

  2. Thanks Katie girl! My heart longs to travel with you. Let's talk soon. Thanks for blogging!

  3. Your photos are gorgeous! Cambodia looks absolutely beautiful. It's so good to hear about organizations working to heal the gaping wounds in the country. Surely a good work!

  4. Beautiful photos and that organization your friend works for sounds amazing! I definitely want to look into that!

  5. Wow!! What gorgeous pictures (as always!) That picture of the monks eating ice cream...awesome!! And that hotel looks spectacular.

  6. Oh wow, the White Linen hotel really is gorgeous! And I love what they stand for and what they are doing. Also the work your friend Isaac is doing is awesome. It's so encouraging to see the healing hand of God in this post. Especially in stark contrast with the evil ways of man that you talked about. Thanks for sharing with us!

  7. Gosh these are just unreal! The colors are so beautiful. Cambodia is now added on my list of places to go!

  8. Wow! Absolutely beautiful! Loved seeing all the pictures and learning a little more about Cambodia from you.

    Quick question...what kind of camera do you use? The colors in your pictures is spectacular!

  9. WOW! What amazing pictures. I was scrolling through admiring them and my husband leans over me and says, where is that?! I love all the culture and color. So beautiful. Also, now I want to eat a rice dish out of a pineapple :)

    Thanks for sharing!


  10. OH MY GOSHHH!!!!
    #1. Your photos are so vibrant! When we get together next month, can we spend a few minutes with you imparting some of your secrets to the most PERFECT PHOTOS EVER? Seriously, you are SO good.
    #2. What a heartbreaking history in the village. I had no idea that massacre occurred.
    #3. I had tears in my eyes when I read about the Daughters of Combodia, AIM, and the White Linin Hotel (which is gorgeous, btw!! wowza!) What amazing ministries seeking to serve the forgotten and giving worth to those the world and the enemy deemed as worthless. Instead, they are showered with the Truth that they are LOVED and PRECIOUS in the eyes of God. What a life-changing Truth!!! It gets me so excited!

  11. You guys had such adventures!! You never made it down to Malaysia, did you?

  12. these pictures are AMAZING!! so thankful for all of your adventures in 2013 - and what you learned - and how you've shared with us ole blog friends :) love ya! xox

  13. Absolutely beautiful! The whole city looks so vibrant and I love that you found such an awesome, inspiring place to stay.

  14. Incredible pictures Katie! AIM sounds so wonderful - truly showing unconditional love to those girls. How cool to see how the Lord is moving across the world through your stories and y'alls travels!

  15. Stunning pictures!!!!! Everything looks so bright and vibrant! Love the heart behind the hotel, so so cool! Yes, I have similar pictures of the people on their scooter's...hysterical how much stuff and how many people they can fit on them!!! Such a great snap shot of your time there!! Thanks for sharing!!

  16. Such lovely colors! I love the photos of the monks by the water.

  17. When I visited that prison a few years ago, I got so nauseous I was unable to finish the tour. I sat in tears on a bench on the grounds, unable to wrap my mind around the horrors that took place there. Hope, though, came in our encounters with so many resilient, often even joy-filled, people during our visit to the city. Thank you so much for sharing about your experience there, and your beautiful photography.

  18. Wow, what an amazing time!!! That's wonderful that you were able to stay in such a blessed hotel AND get to visit your friend's ministry!

    I have another question for your travel Q&A posts too... How do you pack?!?!? You're always wearing the cutest clothes when you're travelling and I just can't imagine how you get them all in one suitcase... Or do you take along more than one??? :-)

  19. So beautiful! I just love all these recap posts, I'm getting the urge to travel! :)

  20. Katie! Your trip looks like it was amazing!!! Where are you off to next? Pretty please say England!?

  21. oh my stars, once again these photos are gorgeous! so vibrant! seriously love hearing about your trips, katie. love that not only are they about having new adventures but they are also so full of Jesus and what he's doing through his people all over the world. it's so encouraging to see/hear.

  22. aww. i'm really touched to read this post! phnom penh is such a heart breaking place for me, especially when visiting Tuol Sleng (I wrote about it not too long ago) and the Killing Fields. You are right- it's a place where we must confront the reality of our broken world and grapple with evil... and it's a place where we must find hope to cling to amidst that reality. i really appreciate your photos, how you describe cambodia (here and your previous posts), and how it inspires others. i also love how you highlighted various organizations that do great work in rehabilitation for sex trafficked victims. i'm familiar with DOC because i've contacted one of the nurses who has worked for them in the past, to inquire from her about her experiences. i had no idea they had their own hotel though! the next time i visit phnom penh, i'll have to look for it. again thanks for recapping your trip... your posts continue to inspire and raise awareness about the plight of the khmer people. God bless ~

  23. I'm so happy that I found your blog through the Fresh Face blog hop! These photos are gorgeous. I'm currently planing a trip to Thailand and Cambodia and I'm so excited to go. Those are my two top destinations to visit, so I can't wait. It looks like you had an amazing trip and I'll definitely be reading about the rest of your SE Asia trip.


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